It happens to the best of us. Injuries, whether we like it or not, come at inconvenient times. They limit our yoga practice, impact our normal lives. And worst of all… it’s frustrating. I honestly think perhaps the hardest part about having an injury is the mental aspect. You want to work out, you want to practice – but doing that will further your injury.

It sucks… but you have to rest.

Last week, I got in a bike accident and the last thing I wanted to do was rest. My weekend had been full of plans to go running, take loads of yoga courses and be active. My knee, however, was not as keen as I on this plan. What ended up happening was I recovered for three days, drank a lot of tea and watched a lot of television. It was perhaps the hardest thing to admit to myself that I would just make my injury worse by trying to pressure my body into doing something it wasn’t ready for.

That doesn’t mean you have to be a couch potato.

While your body might be recovering from an injury, your brain can be as active as it gets. Read a book you’ve been meaning to start for weeks but haven’t had the time. Take some online courses! Do all the little items on your to-do list that you’ve been pushing aside. Now is the perfect time to catch up. I can’t exactly say that I followed that particular philosophy this weekend, but it can distract a bit from frustration that grows from being bound to bed rest.

Be gentle with yourself

This has been my most often used mantra lately. Our society has this weird masochist drive to work ourselves into the ground, train until we can’t move anymore. You should treat your body kindly and treat yourself like you would a friend who received an injury. So just be gentle and remind yourself that injuries happen and the quickest way to recover is give yourself both space and time to heal. It’s a cliche but coming from very recent experience, it’s true.

How did you handle your last injury, yogis? Tell us in the comments!